Monday, 14 June 2010

It's Not Foxconn Stupid, It's The Government...


The petition initiated by Lin Thung-hong (林宗弘) and Daniel Yang (楊友仁) and publicized on Monday's front page left me stunned with an astonishing bout of WTF.

Thung-hong and Yang accuse Foxconn of exploiting its workers in China and, in the very same breath, condemn the government in Taipei for offering subsidies and "favourable policies" for them to relocate to Taiwan - along with all of the "associated social problems".

First, exploitation is exactly what every single company worth its' stock value ought to be doing to its workers, i.e. making efficient use of their freely contracted labour to produce goods highly prized - and freely so - by millions of people right across the entire planet. Such tremendous exploits are deserving of an exalted place in human history.

Second, Chinese workers are suffering because of the government in Beijing, not because of Foxconn:

Does Foxconn fiddle the currency thus wreaking havoc on market prices?

Does Foxconn forcibly prevent Chinese people from creating alternative, trustworthy currencies with which to conduct market exchange?

Does Foxconn apply the threat of imprisonment in order to extract income from the workers in a myriad forms of taxation?

Does Foxconn threaten to imprison them or even kill them and/or their families for expressing pro-freedom views?

Does Foxconn restrict their access to the World Wide Web on pain of imprisonment?

Does Foxconn try to steal their land and wrongfully evict them from their homes?

Third, although Thung-hong and Yang are right to criticize the Ma administration for offering subsidies to Foxconn to relocate back to Taiwan, they do so for entirely wrong-headed reasons. Perhaps they could ask around and find out from whence Foxconn obtained its tainted Chinese subsidies in the first place - and the manner in which these funds were themselves "obtained"...

Sirs, on reading such an astonishing example of moral and economic illiteracy from Thung-hong and Yang, I reflect on the desperate need to cut the number of Universities and Colleges in Taiwan. In waiting for this to happen I can only hope that their students will stand up and walk out of Thung-hong's and Yang's classes if only to save their souls from any further contamination with such obdurate WTF.

Yours freely,
Michael Fagan.

(Sent: Monday 14th June 2010. Published in the Taipei Times Thursday 17th June 2010).

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